Activities and Community Service

Kaho`olawe

The Girls Court services, group processes, and activities all provide a powerful and prime context for girls to build relationship skills as well as maintain healthy relationships. Together they provide social support between the girls, positive connections with staff, their parents, and other adults.

Community service projects and other activities with the girls, their families, and staff provide an opportunity to give back to the community, meet positive people in many areas and fields for the girls and their families, and see their own growth, and actions.

Relationships are important and fundamental to girls' lives. Girls need time to talk, process their feelings and develop healthy relationships of trust as well as interdependence with other females. Observations and evaluation feedback from participating girls consistently indicate that girls value relationships with adults and peers that are caring and supportive. Positive relationships are a primary motivator and serve as a strong protective factor.

The Girls Court Program has received tremendous support from the community and cross-system of agencies. This support has made it possible for Girls Court to greatly and powerfully expand its services and activities and contact network. A number of dedicated individuals and agencies who gave generously of their time and expertise to team with Girls Court staff made it possible for Girls Court to provide the girls and their families a wide array of services as well as positive and healthy activities.

Individually the Girls Court gender-sensitive services and activities are packed with its educational, therapeutic, strength and skill-building benefits. These services and activities collectively strengthen and ensure that girls’ multiple service needs are holistically addressed. Please visit our Services/Partners page.

What follows are highlights for some of the Girls Court activities and community service projects offered throughout the years.

2013 Activities

Lo'i – Service Learning – Cohort 10 (July 20, 2013)

Mother/Daughter Retreat – Cohort 11 (November 15-16, 2013)

Made possible by a grant from the Hawai'i Women's Legal Foundation

This retreat offered mother figures an opportunity to spend quality time together with their child away from daily distractions and schedules. We honor that this relationship is special, and needs to be nurtured throughout the years. This was a wonderful time to walk upon common ground while celebrating differences. We wanted the mother figures and girls to walk away with wonderful memories, a renewed sense of mutual respect and perhaps, a new preceptive on their relationship. Photo Gallery

Lo'i – Service Learning – Cohort 10 (July 20, 2013)

Surfrider Spirit Sessions – Cohort 11 (October 12, 2013)

Girls Court girls met their Surfrider mentors on the beach at Waikiki. The theme for the day was "I practice the virtue of Patience on days of eternal calm reminding me to reflect. " Executive Director Dr. Kevin Fujimoto explained that was a good theme for the day as the waves were considered flat and we may have to wait before catching a wave. In that waiting time, sitting on the surfboard, we were to practice patience and reflect on the good benefits of the day. After surfing, the girls were treated to a bento lunch and spent time with their mentors to journal the events of the day.

One of the surf days is dedicated to giving back. The girls become the mentors and teach little ones how to surf. In doing so, the girls learn patience, empathy, and the awesome feeling that comes with teaching someone to catch their first wave. Photo Gallery

Lo'i – Service Learning – Cohort 10 (July 20, 2013)

Lo'i – Service Learning – Cohort 10 (July 20, 2013)

Ku'u Home Kulaiwi is Winona Chaney's (Aunty Nona) Lo'i in Waialua. It was one of those spectacular brilliant Hawaiian days, when Girls Court girls and staff stepped into the lo'i to clear the weeds, long grass and prepare the lo'i for future planting. We all got head to toe muddy, so it was, after working in the hot sun, a delicious moment to jump into the clean punawai (natural spring) to clean and cool off. Then Aunty Nona told us the history of her family living on the land and Public Health Nurse, Joan Takamori, instructed the girls to prepare a salad from greens grown in the garden. It was a fulfilling and beautiful day on the north shore. Photo Gallery

2012 Activities

Completion of Program – A Celebration for Cohort 9 (July 6, 2012)

Completion of Program – A Celebration for Cohort 9 (July 6, 2012)

Girls Court ninth cohort of girls celebrated a year of participating in the program at Ali'iolani Hale, the Hawaii Supreme Court courtroom. On this special day, parents, our staff and invited guests who partnered with Girls Court came together to acknowledge and celebrate the girls' growth despite the challenges they face. Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald addressed the girls with encouragement and congratulations. Each girl received a potted lemon tree denoting "when life gives you lemons..." and to symbolize that from their roots of nurturing, family group, counseling, and Hawaiian culture, grows trust, respect, identity, purpose and competence. Photo Gallery

2010 Activities

Mother/Daughter Retreat (May 7 & 8, 2010)

Mother/Daughter Retreat (May 7 & 8, 2010)

 Sometimes you have to take a step back and take a good look at what you have in order to move forward.  The girls and their moms/grandmoms spent Friday including overnight to Saturday at beautiful Kokokahi Women’s Y in Kaneohe overlooking the ocean.  We ate well, did posters symbolizing the families' relationship, created a bon fire, and did other activities led by our able therapists.  The second morning ended with breakfast and gifts provided by The Body Shop to the daughters to give to their moms. Photo Gallery

Completion of Program – A Celebration for Cohort 6 (April 9, 2010)

Completion of Program – A Celebration for Cohort 6 (April 9, 2010)

Our sixth class of girls to complete the program celebrated with a ceremony attended by the girls, their parents, our staff and invited guests who have partnered with Girls Court. In the historic Ali’iolani Hale, the Hawaii Supreme Court courtroom, we gathered to acknowledge and celebrate the girls’ growth over the past year despite the challenges they encounter. Special guest speaker, Shakira Washington, Associate Policy Director of the Rebecca Project for Human Rights based in Washington D.C., spoke to the girls about her advocacy for girls and women’s human rights. Photo Gallery

 Computer Class (February 13 & 14, 2010)

Computer Class (February 13 & 14, 2010)

Forbes Foundation and the Rotary Club of Hawaii Kai spent two full days with our girls.  Each girl was given a computer, keyboard, monitor and a full tool kit.  Their job was to take the computer apart, clean and reassemble it. Even the shyest of the group not only disassembled her computer but also reassembled it into full working order. A retired Honolulu Police Department official explained the dangers as well as the wonderful side of the Internet.  Each girl took home her machine and tool kit as well as a whole new store of skills and knowledge. Photo Gallery

2009 Activities

Gingerbread Houses (December 22, 2009)

Gingerbread Houses (December 22, 2009)

American Business Women's Association Imua Chapter generously donated gingerbread house kits so each girl and her mom/grandmom could build a symbolic holiday house.  Since Girls Court is all about rebuilding family relationships, this served as a perfect symbolic activity for the season.  Good times were had by the moms and daughters.  Frosting abounded. Photo Gallery

Holiday Cheer – Community Service (December 20, 2009)

Building on what we learned in October, we again partnered with the medical students and hosted a Holiday Party at Next Step Transitional Housing.  We brought Christmas bags; other presents and books to little ones living in the transitional shelter.  

Girl Fest (October/November, 2009)

Girl Fest (October/November, 2009)

Girl Fest came to Honolulu and we were chosen to assist artist John Hina in painting a huge 9 X 12ft mural for the opening of Girl Fest. He worked with the girls in creating a canvas which depicted their depression, and with faith, hope and forgiveness to rise above to a lasting victory. The Girls also made plaster facial masks, painted and mounted them into a sculpture to be displayed at the Girl Fest opening day art show.  The girls further enjoyed the seminars, girl’s circles and informative and exciting events through the 10 day long Girl Fest. Photo Gallery

National Make a Difference Day - Community Service (October, 2009)

National Make a Difference Day - Community Service (October, 2009)

Girls Court girls and their families partnered with medical students from the John A. Burns School of Medicine, University of Hawaii to Make a Difference by bringing a Halloween party to children residing at the Paiolu Kaiaulu Shelter.  We manned a Go-Fish game booth with prizes for the little ones, painted faces and nails, held children and got to enjoy the company of young medical students who don't look that much different than us and the company of kids whose faces lit up with the attention and happy theme. Photo Gallery

Completion of Program – A Celebration for Cohort 5 (August 6, 2009) 

Completion of Program – A Celebration for Cohort 5 (August 6, 2009)  

Girls Court fifth class of girls celebrated a year of participating in the program at Ali’iolani Hale, the Hawaii Supreme Court courtroom. On this special day, parents, our staff and invited guests who partnered with Girls Court came together to acknowledge and celebrate the girls’ growth despite the challenges they face. Girls Court girls do not "graduate," because even though finishing the program the girls will face choices throughout their life's journey as young and maturing women. Our journey celebration recognizes the girls' walk along the pathway and welcomes them back to Girls Court as alumni who can work to become mentors to the incoming class of younger girls. Photo Gallery

Malama Aina Community Service (July 2009)

Malama Aina Community Service (July 2009)

Girls, their families and staff members got down and dirty pulling huge weeds and taro that needed to be transplanted. Many hands made light work out of cleaning a whole patch at the Haleiwa loi with Aunty Nona and public health nurse, Joan Takamori. We learned Hawaiian culture and values, the old way of doing things and connected to nature and the growth of the taro patch. After a hot morning of muddy work, we got to rinse off in the cold clear water of a natural punawai (underground spring) where Queen Lilioukulani was said to have come during her trips to the country.

Family Programs Hawaii Summer Picnic Community Service (June 2009)

Family Programs Hawaii Summer Picnic Community Service (June 2009)

The girls and their parents, extended families including brothers, sisters and aunties too, volunteered at the Family Programs Hawaii annual Summer Picnic at the Wet and Wild WaterPark. Over 1,100 foster children, their families and 300 volunteers walked through our lunch lines and received service with a smile. The day was warm and filled with good cheer for the kids we served and their families.

Home Collages – Pen Women (May 2009)

Home Collages – Pen Women (May 2009)

Sabra Feldstein of The National League of American Pen Women Honolulu Branch, instructed the girls to create collages depicting what their home meant to them. At this session, Girls Court was fortunate to have present, Honolulu Advertiser reporter, Lee Cataluna, who later wrote an article on Girls Court.  Photo Gallery

Honoring Mothers (May/June 2009)

Honoring Mothers (May/June 2009)

As is our tradition, girls and mothers joined together to do crafts, to write cards to each other and to generally enjoy each others’ company on a Saturday morning. Lunch and lots of smiles rounded out the day as girls and moms reconnected. Photo gallery

Art Through Photography (Spring 2009)

Art Through Photography (Spring 2009)

Sometimes girls can find their voice through art or photography. The Honolulu Academy of Arts’ non-profit outreach program enabled Girls Court girls to participate in photography classes. These classes developed their sense of craftsmanship and stimulated their imaginations to problem-solve and use critical-thinking skills. In these pictures, we see how they applied what they learned to convey their thoughts and feelings through the art of photography. Photo gallery

Surfrider Spirit Sessions (Spring 2009)

Surfrider Spirit Sessions (Spring 2009)

We braved cold waves and some gray weather to get out early each Saturday morning to do the Surfrider Spirit Sessions. Thanks to the never flagging determination of our mentors, the new Girls Court girls were given the same opportunity to learn surfing, life’s lessons and environmental science lessons as the girls before them. (See the Surfrider Spirit Sessions 2007 below.) Photo gallery

Celebration of the Girls’ Journey (January 2009)

Celebration of the Girls’ Journey (January 2009)

Girls Court fourth class of girls celebrated a year of participating in the program at Ali’iolani Hale, the Hawaii Supreme Court courtroom. On this special day parents, our staff and invited guests who have partnered with Girls Court came together to acknowledge and celebrate the girls’ growth despite the challenges they face. Our journey celebration recognizes the girls’ walk along this pathway and welcomes them back as alumni who can work to become mentors to the incoming class of younger girls. Photo gallery

2008 Activities

Family Programs Hawaii 2008 Holiday Party – Community Service Project (December 14, 2008)

Family Programs Hawaii 2008 Holiday Party – Community Service Project (December 14, 2008)

Once again, the girls, their parents and staff of Girls Court served over 2,000 children and foster parents at the Family Programs Hawaii 2008 Holiday Party. These foster families were acknowledged with a wonderful day filled with music, dance, and delicious food.  This community service was an opportunity for the Girls Court girls to consider how lucky they are to have a family and to experience the joy in giving. Photo gallery

Art Through Photography (October – November 2008)

Art Through Photography (October – November 2008)

The Honolulu Academy of Arts’ non-profit outreach program enabled Girls Court Cohort IV girls to participate in five classes of photography.  These classes developed their sense of craftsmanship and stimulated their imaginations to problem-solve and use critical-thinking skills. In these pictures, we see how they applied what they learned to convey their thoughts and feelings through the art of photography. Photo gallery

Hee Nalu Studies (October 2008)

Hee Nalu Studies (October 2008)

Girls who had surfed the Surfrider Spirit Sessions were invited to participate with others in Hee Nalu’s Learning Center, an innovative virtual learning center. NALU Studies was an intense two week full day classroom and hands-on learning activities out in the field to study the Ahupua’a and the relationship of land, water and human impact, doing scientific testing and sample taking in Kaneohe Bay with lab work at the Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology and Windward Community College. Each student prepared a power point presentation and did daily journals and tests regarding the concepts learned. At the end, each was certified in CPR and First-Aid skills, received one college credit, pre-enrollment in the UH Community College system plus learned valuable study and scientific skills.

National Make a Difference Day (October 2008)

National Make a Difference Day (October 2008)

Wanting to participate in National Make a Difference Day, girls who had been mentored by strong women surfers in the community turned the tables and became the mentors to a group of women survivors of breast cancer. The girls, who are survivors themselves in many ways, taught these brave women to paddle out and give it a try. All the women managed to stand on the boards and catch waves despite a rainy gloomy day with the weather not cooperating. Girls who had originally believed they could never surf turned into great instructors for women who had faced the diagnosis of cancer, completed medical procedures and survived. The women provided valuable advice and much appreciation to the girls.

Honoring Fathers (July 11, 2008)

To heal and build Father/Daughter relationships was the object of our Honoring Fathers event. Dr. Allana Coffee, girls Court Therapist, used the Hawaiian legend of “Maluae and the Under World” as a cultural example of the love between a father and his child. This was followed by sharing taro, fathers writing positive attributes of their daughter’s spirit and presenting them to her, a hearty meal and then a Father/Daughter dance to “Butterfly Kisses.”

Foster Family Picnic – Community Service Project (June 2008)

Foster Family Picnic – Community Service Project (June 2008)

Helping the Foster Family Programs of Hawaii, the girls, their families and staff volunteered to coordinate family games for the Foster Family Summer picnic held at Hawaiian Waters Adventure Park. The games included water balloon dodge ball, a sponge and water game and “hot potato.” This project enabled the girls to develop leadership skills while bringing fun into the lives of foster children and families. Photo Gallery

Honoring Mothers (May 2008)

Honoring Mothers (May 2008)

To increase and strengthen the relationship between mothers and daughters, Girls Court provided a day of creative activities to honor the girls’ mothers and women mentors. The activities enabled mother and daughter to be creative, communicate, and thereby nurture a stronger bond between them. Photo Gallery

Surfrider Spirit Sessions (April 2008)

Surfrider Spirit Sessions (April 2008)

For the second year, Girls Court girls and staff were given the opportunity to learn to surf, mentored by surfing volunteers from the community and surf school instructors. Lunch and talk story sessions followed lead by local author Cynthia Derosier. Girls and their mentors used the themes in Cynthia’s book “The Surfer Spirit” exploring how we make choices, take risks, deal with disappointments and honor our responsibilities and to live the adventurer spirit. Each session ended with a brief marine/environmental science lesson that tied the day at the beach with waves and currents to enhance our understanding of and appreciation for our environment in Hawaii.

Mokauea Island – A Community Service Event (March 2008)

Mokauea Island – A Community Service Event (March 2008)

Hosted by Donna Kahakui and her Kai Makana – Ocean Education Through Action organization, and the coordinating efforts of Dr. Lynette Cruz, Anthropology Professor at Chaminade University, Girls Court provided a community service by assisting in the clearing of mangrove plants on the last fishing village on the island of O’ahu. Under clear Hawaiian skies, girls, parents and staff paddled outrigger canoes to Mokauea Island. Then all participated in a morning of clearing branches, lumber, and trash followed by a tour of the island learning its history and place in Hawaii’s past and present. Photo Gallery

Pen Women (Throughout 2008)

Pen Women (Throughout 2008)

Through the creative efforts of the National League of American Pen Women Honolulu Chapter, the girls tapped into their emotions and were encouraged to self-express themselves in writing and artwork. The program included professional guest speakers, local artists, established authors, technology and acting experts all sharing their talents. Photo Gallery

2007 Activities

Celebration of the Girls’ Journey (December 2007)

Celebration of the Girls’ Journey (December 2007)

Our third class of girls celebrated with a ceremony attended by the girls, their parents, our staff and invited guests who have partnered with Girls Court. In the historic Ali’iolani Hale, the Hawaii Supreme Court courtroom, we gathered to acknowledge and celebrate the girls’ growth over the past year despite the challenges they face. The ceremony opened with remarks by the Chief Justice Ronald T. Y. Moon, Judge Radius, Girls Court Coordinator Adriane Abe and Professor Lynette Cruz.

One of our girls rose to speak her heartfelt thanks for the opportunity to attend the Girls Court program and for the support extended by the staff and other families in her difficult times. Then Girls Court parents, one from last year’s cohort and one from the present, shared with us their struggles and victories within their families. The ceremony was topped off with a presentation of a new Girls Court logo tee shirt designed by one of our alumni girls and a generous lei presentation by the Hawaii Women Lawyers. Photo Gallery

PowerPoint Workshop (October 24, 2007)

PowerPoint Workshop (October 24, 2007)

The National League of American Pen Women, Honolulu Branch, donated their time and talents to provide a PowerPoint computer workshop for the girls. Centered on “Gratitude,” the girls had a hands-on opportunity to begin learning how to create a PowerPoint slide show. These “Gratitude” slide shows will be incorporated into our Celebration Ceremony in December to share with family and friends. Photo Gallery

Girl Power – Community Service Project (October 20, 2007)

Girl Power – Community Service Project (October 20, 2007)

The Coalition for a Drug-Free Hawaii in partnership with Sassy magazine presented the 3rd Annual Girl Power Event for over 500 teen girls and women at the Hawaii Convention Center. The event opened with a performance of My Body-My Space by Grace Intelligence. And then the premier of Swim With Your Current, a book that encourages girls to remember their true self and be of service. Following these, creative activities and resource booths were set up to inspire health and wellness. Girls Court provided event participants to take their newly photographed pictures, mount them in picture frames and then decorate them. Mothers and daughters worked together, interacting with event participants while supplying two tables with frames and decorations. Once again, this proved to be very popular activity. Photo Gallery

Kaho’olawe – Community Service Project (October 1-4, 2007)

Kaho’olawe – Community Service Project (October 1-4, 2007)

For a second year, the Kaho’olawe Island Reserve Commission permitted Girls Court to perform community service on the island of Kaho’olawe. Girls and staff worked together planting, watering and mulching native species of vegetation in order to heal the land. In the toil of giving back to the community, the girls experienced their own personal strengths and abilities.  Their stay included visiting some of the island’s sacred places. Dr. Lynette Cruz, a cultural anthropologist teaching at the Hawaii Pacific University and one of the chaperones, brought with her a wealth of knowledge about the Hawaiian culture which she shared throughout the trip. This enriched the girls by furthering their awareness and understanding of their own culture. The girls were personally, spiritually and educationally benefited from this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Photo Gallery

Starwood Hotels Tour (Sept 8, 2007)

Starwood Hotels Tour (Sept 8, 2007)

Thelma “Kehuau” Kam, Director of Cultural Services for the Starwood Hotels & Resorts in Waikiki, volunteered to escort the Girls Court girls and staff on a three hotel tour. Kehau, with gracious aloha, narrated the history of points of interest in Waikiki as she guided us on a walking tour of the Moana Surfrider, the Princess Kaiulani and the Royal Hawaiian hotels. At each, she discussed opportunities of employment within the hotel industry and the possibility of the girls experiencing a hotel position by “shadowing.”  This worthwhile tour ended with a beautiful luncheon at the Royal Hawaiian. Photo Gallery

Honoring Mothers (May 2006 and May 2007)

Honoring Mothers (May 2007)

For Mother’s Day 2007, the Girls Court girls honored their mothers and grandmothers with a series of activities such as Japanese tea ceremony, flower arranging, and hand and shoulder massages. The activity provided opportunities for family building and strengthening the all-important relationships between parents and daughters. Photo Gallery '07

Surfrider Spirit Sessions (April - June, 2007)

Surfrider Spirit Sessions (April - June, 2007)

Through the charitable contributions of Hawaii Women Lawyers, Women's Fund of Hawaii, and the Surfrider Foundation the Girls Court girls were given the opportunity to hone their surfing skills. Learning how to surf was the vehicle local author, Cynthia Derosier, used to assist the girls with looking at how we make choices, take risks, deal with disappointment and stay committed, honor our responsibilities and live the adventurer spirit. Roxy donated tons of goodies. All who participated, girls, parents, and staff learned one of the most exhilarating ways to enjoy life in the world.
April Photo Gallery
- June Photo Gallery - June Video 1 - Video 2 - August Photo Gallery

Hawai`i Fi-Do Service Dogs – Community Service Project (February 2006 and March 2007)

Hawai`i Fi-Do Service Dogs – Community Service Project (March 2007)

This family event brought the girls and their parents, and Girls Court staff to a location where others needed their services. Everyone helped with painting and yard work. The girls then helped groom and train the dogs that are needed by people with disabilities. The families learned about the need to be consistent, attentive and complimentary. They also learned that they can enjoy themselves as a family and that they too can make a difference to others in the community. Photo Gallery 07

Winners’ Camp (February 2007)

Winners’ Camp (February 2007)

What a fabulous way to spend the day learning to take control of ones’ life and ones’ choices. Gathered under the hypnotic and effervescent leadership of Winners’ Camp Director, Delorese Gregorie, parents and teens were led through various experiential exercises and chants. As the main event, parents and girls fell into one another’s arms during a life-threatening (or so it felt like) event…the Trust Fall. All participants were asked to declare a challenge before climbing up a scaffold. Then with backs turned to those below and crossing both arms close to their chest, each parent and daughter fell backwards choosing to trust that those below would catch them with a net. Trusting became a huge learning implement on this incredible day.

Pen Women at Girls Court (throughout 2007)

Pen Women at Girls Court (throughout 2007)

For the second year in a row, the Honolulu Chapter of the American National League of American Pen Women, a group of professional women with creative talents in arts, music and letters, have shared their creativity and community connections with our girls. This year the girls have explored their histories with Slam Poetry with Kealoha, a local poet and Nancy Moss, a playwright. The girls have explored movement and expression with a dancer who led them through self-expression and exploration with objects and movement. Alsha, a local artist, who expresses herself often through "junk art" led the girls in creating recycled t-shirt fashion statements. The Pen Women have envisioned this lively program for each month after the court session. There is still more to come this year....! Photo Gallery | Photo Gallery 2

2006 Activities

Celebration of the Girls' Journey (December 2006)

Celebration of the Girls' Journey (December 2006)

Our second class of girls celebrated with a ceremony attended by the girls, their parents, our staff and a host of invited quests who have partnered with Girls Court and wanted to celebrate the girls' journey over the past year. The ceremony, held in historic Ali'iolani Hale the Hawaii Supreme Court courtroom, was opened with remarks by the Chief Justice Ronald T.Y. Moon., Judge Radius, Donna Taniguchi and Kowboy from the Kahoolawe Island Restoration Commission. A touching ceremony where the girls and their parents each acknowledged their growth and their wishes for the future brought tears to many an eye.

An old Chinese proverb says, "A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step." and our families had traveled a long way in one year. Girls Court girls don't "graduate," because even though finishing the program the girls will face choices throughout their life's journey as young and maturing women. Our journey celebration recognizes the girls' walk along the pathway and welcomes them back to Girls Court as alumni who can work to become mentors to the incoming class of younger girls. Photo Gallery

Foster Family Christmas Party - Community Service Project (December 2006)

Foster Family Christmas Party - Community Service Project (December 2006)

The girls, their parents and staff all came together during the holidays to provide support and service to the annual Foster Family Christmas Party. The girls served over 2000 families and children. This project enabled the girls to “give back” to others who like many of themselves had been away from their families during the holidays. It offered them another opportunity to be grateful for all they have and to feel the joy in giving. Photo Gallery

Power of Words: Art Workshop (November 2006)

Power of Words: Art Workshop (November 2006)

The National League of American Pen Women, Honolulu Branch, created a powerful computer workshop for the girls to reflect on the expression of “Gratitude” after one year in Girls Court. The girls were given an opportunity to design their own canvas collages that combined their favorite things of which they were grateful in photo format with words. They did this project through paint and print media. The girls were able to share their work with their families and all attendees at the Celebration Ceremony in December. Photo Gallery

Clay Workshop (October 2006)

Clay Workshop (October 2006)

This activity offered the Girls Court participants the opportunity to work with clay in a unique and reflective manner. The girls were invited to create clay masks that showed both the visible and invisible parts of themselves. The girls were encouraged to work with symbols, color and glazes to demonstrate their feelings. As a closing process the girls were invited to share their finished work and reflections of what they learned about themselves and others. Photo Gallery

Girl Power Event (September 2006)

Girl Power Event (September 2006)

Girls Court participants were invited to attend the Girl Power Event held at the University of Hawaii, Manoa. The girls watched a short play on the effects of drug use put on by teen actors from the Kalihi/Palama Health Clinic program. Following the play the girls attended a series of workshops on a variety of subjects pertinent to teen age girls. Girls Court also offered a workshop to the participants that included picture taking, frame making and mounting. This workshop proved to be very popular. The entire day offered the girls from Girls Court an opportunity to meet with other service agencies and teens who like themselves are struggling to make good choices. Photo Gallery

Kaho`olawe - Community Service Project (August 2006)

Kaho`olawe - Community Service Project (August 2006)

Girls Court was granted the rare opportunity to go to the Hawai`ian island of Kaho’olawe, formerly used for military training and target practice from 1941 to 1990. The island has been given back to Hawai`i, and the Kaho’olawe Island Reserve Commission (KIRC) is managing the clean up and restoring of native vegetation and protecting cultural artifacts.

The Girls Court girls lived together, shared the aina (land), and worked to restore the sacred place. The girls and staff assisted in planting native species of vegetation, clearing trails and paths, and learned about the island’s sacred history, which relates to their own personal stories. This experience was another way in which the girls learned about their culture, giving back to the community and understanding their own strengths and growth as a young woman. The girls benefited personally, spiritually, and educationally from this once-in-a lifetime opportunity. Photo Gallery

Hawai`ian Outrigger Canoe Experience (August 2006)

Hawai`ian Outrigger Canoe Experience (August 2006)

This was an entire family event that took parents, teens and siblings to the water. The history of the canoe, the local beaches and the people who paddle was a gift offered to those present. The parents, teens, and siblings were given the opportunity to paddle a canoe together as a family. They were photographed in the canoe and given the photo as a family memento to take home. This day was designed to show families how fun it is to spend the day together and enjoy each other’s company. For many families, times like this are rare. This day proved to be very rewarding for the participants. Families that play together grow together. Photo Gallery

Ropes Challenge (July 2006)

Ropes Challenge (July 2006)

This was a completely family event, which took girls and their parents out of the city into the wild. Going up on the ropes provided participants a great opportunity to learn about risk-taking, their own perceived limits, how they perform under pressure, how they give and receive support from other people, and how working with others collaboratively helps achieve more than they thought they could accomplish. Everyone who participated, including parents who felt a little out of shape, was able to complete the tasks. The completion of each task was secondary next to the willingness to take the risk to do it. The process of participating, of supporting, of celebrating one's successes, of being willing to depend on others to assist and hold our lives in their hands was an incredible experience for those who have been betrayed, often by those who are meant to protect them. This was a very healing experience for many of the girls and their parents. Being witness to another person’s act of courage is a real gift and the families all left feeling better about themselves and closer to each other. Photo Gallery

Invention Factory (July 2006)

Invention Factory (July 2006)

The Girls Court girls participated in an “Invention Factory” project led by the Women in Technology, a non-profit group whose aim is to encourage more girls to go into the science and technology fields. The all day “Invention Factory” allowed the girls to give back to the community by adapting toys for use by disabled children, which will be donated to Shriner’s Hospital. The girls gained valuable insight into the basics of circuitry and electronics and were able to learn basic soldering and circuit-making skills. This activity provided vocational insight, basic knowledge and skills, as well as an opportunity to perform community service. The girls worked with engineers and young women engineering students. Photo Gallery

Summer Institute (July 2006)

Summer Institute (July 2006)

The Honolulu Branch of the National League of American Pen Women designed this four-day event for the girls to introduce them to women who were published and wanted to share their talents. The women writers showed the girls that they too could be successful authors. The girls participated in writing activities and by reflecting on their own histories learned, that they had something to write about that others want to hear. The girls experienced sharing their stories aloud in front of others and appreciated the challenge of public speaking and the appreciation of sharing themselves with others and the applause of approval and respect. The girls learned that their histories were to be celebrated not hidden as so many of them had thought they should be.

Women’s Way – Community Service Project (June 2006)

Women’s Way – Community Service Project (June 2006)

For National Make a Difference Day, the Girls Court girls decided on performing their community service project at Women’s Way, an inpatient community treatment program for mothers with drug abuse issues who are pregnant or have children under the age of three. The Girls Court girls and their mothers made picture frames together with the women in treatment and took pictures of the women and their babies. The Girls Court girls were able to interact with the women who in turn provided valuable insight for the girls from their own experiences from drugs and delinquency.

Girls Court was recognized nationally by the USA Weekend for its efforts at Women’s Way. The local newspaper also honored Girls Court for its project. Girls Court was presented a Certificate of Recognition by Michael Fisch, the Honolulu Advertiser publisher and president.

Honoring Mothers (May 2006 and May 2007)

Honoring Mothers (May 2006 )

For Mother’s Day 2006, the Girls Court girls honored their mothers and grandmothers with a series of activities such as Japanese tea ceremony, flower arranging, and hand and shoulder massages. The activity provided opportunities for family building and strengthening the all-important relationships between parents and daughters. Photo Gallery '06

TJ Mahoney & Associates (April 2006)

TJ Mahoney & Associates (April 2006)

TJ Mahoney invited the girls to interact with the women residing at a halfway house program for women upon leaving prison. Together the women and girls discussed overcoming past traumas and challenging relationships to become positive members of our community.

Spring to Success (March 2006)

Spring to Success (March 2006)

Kamehameha Scholars Program sponsored this event that introduced Girls Court girls to women in non-traditional jobs such as pipe fitters, aircraft mechanics, emergency medical technicians, and airline pilots. The girls were also treated to a session with Rebecca Stewart Modeling School on how to look good and appropriate on the job.

Hawai`i Fi-Do Service Dogs – Community Service Project (February 2006 and March 2007)

Hawai`i Fi-Do Service Dogs – Community Service Project (February 2006 )

This family event brought the girls and their parents, and Girls Court staff to a location where others needed their services. Everyone helped with painting and yard work. The girls then helped groom and train the dogs that are needed by people with disabilities. The families learned about the need to be consistent, attentive and complimentary. They also learned that they can enjoy themselves as a family and that they too can make a difference to others in the community. Photo Gallery 06

Family Night at the Courts (February 2006)

Family Night at the Courts (February 2006)

The girls of Girls Court and their families and staff were guests of the Wahine Basketball Team at the Stan Sheriff Arena, University of Hawai`i. The girls saw young women able to balance healthy competitive sports and a full college curriculum.


2005 Activities

Lokahi Tree – Community Service Project (November 2005)

Lokahi Tree – Community Service Project (November 2005)

The first group of Girls Court girls, their families, and staff sorted toys at the Lokahi Tree Christmas project and packed 700 bags of food for needy families. The girls, their families, and staff all felt fulfilled to lend a hand to Hawai`i’s struggling families and help make their holiday season brighter.

Food Bank Collection Drive - Community Service Project (April 2005)

Food Bank Collection Drive - Community Service Project (April 2005)

For our second Community Service Project, the girls and staff of Girls Court collected money to help feed the hungry. By participating in this event, the girls were able to feel the satisfaction of supporting the community and helping others.

KHON-TV (February 2005)

KHON-TV (February 2005)

Girls Court girls, their families and staff visited KHON television station and met with popular anchor, Leslie Wilcox and the news cast crew.


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